Ever get your hair professionally done with amazing results and then you try to do it yourself and its just not the same? You have a good flat iron, and it seems like you have all the same products, so why can’t you get the same results? It took me a while to get the hang of flat ironing. Well, there is a reason why the pros are the pros. It is their technique which makes the difference.
Whether you are using a 1.5 inch, .5 inch, or 2 inch plates, you can get great results with any type of flat iron from the A8563 to the SU-150A in the fhi flat iron, the chi flat iron, the ghd or any other kind.
Try these techniques to achieve professional results when flat ironing your own hair
Start with a good hair cut
If your hair is damaged by split ends, it simply won’t look good when straightened. If you are careful you can definitely do a light trim yourself, but a straightened hair style only looks good with a nice even cut.
Make sure your hair is clean and conditioned
If you flat iron hair that has dirt and products in it, you are basically frying the dirt and products into your hair. This is somewhat damaging to your hair and you lose the lightness and shine that you’d have with clean hair.
If your hair is well-conditioned that means it is moisturized and fortified. The products that you put on while you are styling your hair aren’t enough. You need to start with it nicely conditioned so that your hair can take the heat without being more damaged. With the same logic as getting the haircut, Applying heat to dry, brittle hair is only adding to the damage.
Use a smoothing serum
Use a humidity-resistant smoothing balm or serum coating all of your hair right after you are done shampooing and conditioning and before you dry. This is especially important if you live in a high humidity area. Some favorites:
Make sure your hair is completely dry
Some flat irons claim that you can flat iron damp or wet hair, but for the best and longest lasting results, it is best to start with completely dry hair. If your hair is not completely dry, the moisture that is still inside your hair will just creep out after you flat iron, and cause the hair to frizz back up.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to blow dry your hair. You can always allow your hair to air dry, sit under a dryer or wet wrap your hair. Also keep in mind that if your hair tends to retain a lot of moisture, it might not be completely dry after you blow dry it. If you do blow dry, allow your hair to air dry or sit under the dryer for a while after before you start to flat iron.
Another thing to note is that when you blow dry or flat iron your hair, the water inside your hair expands and if it expands too quickly the expansion can cause damage to the hair shaft. Think of a pipe under too much pressure bursting at a pressure point. So to avoid this type of combustion effect, you don’t want to heat up the hair too quickly. Use the lowest temperature setting that will work.
Use Heat Protectant
You use the heat protectant after your hair is dry and as you are flat ironing each section. It also helps if you spray the heat protectant onto your hand and then smooth it over the section with your hands.
Take your time
Try not to take this on when you are rushing. You need to take your time and use slow controlled movement. Take small sections (approx ¾” wide and very thin) and run the plates from root to tip 2 or 3 times. Don’t let the iron sit in one spot on your hair, but start at the root and slowly drag the plates over your hair to the tip. Hold on to the tip of your hair until the flat iron plates pass over it.
Stretch out your hair first, then use the iron.
Pull the section of hair out so that it is pulled straight, then run the iron over the section. Again, hold onto the tip of your hair until the flat iron passes over it. Don’t try to run the iron over a curly section without pulling it out first and don’t just pass the flat iron over hair that is not being held taught.
Bonus Tip: Wrap your hair up at night with a silk or satin bonnet or scarf before bed. You can also sleep on a satin pillowcase to further protect your hair. Your morning routine should be to just take your hair down and lightly run your fingers through. You shouldn’t really even have to comb or brush it. And you should not have to flat iron it again until after you wash it.